Category Archives: Monday Motivation

Monday Motivation: Don’t Watch the Clock

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This is a guest post by fellow writer, Stephen Graves. You can follow him on twitter at @SGraves612.

 

We live life one day after another, similar to the way a clock ticks from one second to another. We’ve all heard that old chestnut about how a watched clock never tells time, right? Well, if you stare at a clock, you’ll get a snapshot of time, but you won’t get a sense of its progression. That’s a small but important distinction for this metaphor.

I worry on a daily basis, throughout the day even, that I’m not close enough to my goals. I fear that my writing isn’t good enough in terms of quality and volume. I wish I were reading more. My saving’s aren’t where I want them to be. I’m not as physically fit as I hope to be. I have close friends, but it would be nice to have more. You get the picture. One of the defining qualities of humanity, for better or worse, is our inability to be satisfied.

It’s because, at any given moment, we’re only looking at a snapshot of our lives. We’re watching the clock tick, and that’s why it doesn’t tell time.

I don’t keep a journal, but in moments of high stress, I’ve been known to jot my thoughts as a form of meditation and stress relief. One day, I was feeling down about seemingly going nowhere in life, and I happened to stumble upon one of these old stress entries. It was amazing to see how much better my life was, in every area, than it had been when I wrote the entry. I was so concerned with the ups and downs of the snapshot that I’d been missing the upward trending progression.

Even knowing this, I still stress about my goals. You probably will, too. That’s human nature. It’s not a bad thing in itself, but any time you feel especially bogged down in the tick-by-tick slog, pull back and look at just how much progress you’ve made. Don’t sweat those small concerns.

 

You’re probably much further along than you realize.

 

Monday Motivation: Make a Difference

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“Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.” -William James

 

Sometimes it’s hard to keep yourself motivated for another work day or the beginning of another long work week. You might ask yourself, “Why am I doing this again?” or “Is it really worth the money?” One way to not get bogged down by these thoughts is to adjust your attitude! I know sometimes I focus on the negative too much and find myself complaining and venting to my loved ones. Instead of focusing on what you don’t like about your job, focus on what you do like. You may not be able to change how your day is going, but you can choose how you react to it.

You may wonder if what you do for a living even matters. From the lowest position to the position of a CEO of a major company or corporation, what you do matters and makes a difference in this world. We all affect each other and contribute to our society whether in big or small ways. One of the most important ways is by spreading love and positivity into the world. It’s very easy to complain about what you think is going wrong concerning your position or that your day is terrible, because it’s another boring or stressful Monday. Choose to smile and spread joy.

 

Choose to have a positive attitude!

 

Monday Motivation: Just Try

 

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“Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try.”

 

This quote by Olympic medal-winning runner, Gail Devers, seems simple enough, but is actually profound. As a perfectionist, I sometimes feel paralyzed, fearing I’ll do something completely wrong or won’t finish a task perfectly. I quickly jump into worry-mode instead of simply taking the first step.

In order be successful, you must complete your work. Instead of letting fear of failure hinder your progress, just do your best. If you do fail, then you will learn how to do better next time. If you don’t try, you will be filled with regret.

 

Try, learn, and then you will succeed!

 

Monday Motivation: Make it Happen

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“Some people want it to happen. Some wish it would happen. Others make it happen” -Michael Jordan

 

Wishing and doing are two completely different things. Wishing is wonderful; it allows one to use his imagination to start planning goals for the future. But if that person doesn’t take action, he will be forever waiting around for something to happen instead of trying to actually achieve his goals.

It’s easy to look at successful athletes, singers, and entrepreneurs and wish we were like them. They worked hard, took risks, and took full of advantage of every opportunity that was placed in front of them. We may see an extraordinary lady’s end game and think she just got lucky, but the truth is that she got where she is today by taking action, working hard, and not giving up until she saw her dreams manifested.

 

Remember that whatever you do today will shape your tomorrows, so get started and keep going until you achieve greatness. Make it happen!

 

Monday Motivation: Successful People Don’t Mind Others

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“Successful people never worry about what others are doing.”

 

Those who succeed create their own path. They stay on track by ignoring what other people are doing and where they are going. Of course they encourage and help those around them, but they understand that every person is on their own unique journey. They don’t listen to naysayers who discourage them by saying that what they are trying to achieve is impossible or unrealistic. They charge full speed ahead, only focusing on their own path ahead of them.

Successful people don’t worry about looking stupid or silly. They might be doing something no one has done before or creating something that didn’t exist before. They don’t care what others think of it (unless, of course, they are creating a product for customers). They are wholly driven by their passion and not by the approval of others. They work for their own applause and not the accolades of the masses.

 

Monday Motivation: Plan and be Flexible

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“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” -John Lennon

 

Without dreams and goals we wouldn’t accomplish much. We might make carefully laid out plans for our lives, our years, our weeks, and even our days, but we never know what life will throw at us. I believe that to succeed, you have to make plans, but you also must learn to be flexible.

 
Life is full of surprises. Some are pleasant, such as an unplanned visit from a friend you haven’t seen in forever. Others are an unexpected burden like an illness that results in a mountain of medical bills. Those who succeed have learned to navigate through their unforeseen circumstances gracefully. This week, plan to be successful by working hard to achieve your goals, but don’t drown in disappointment if things don’t go your way. As you journey through each day, alter your plans to fit your life. If you want to accomplish much, you have to be flexible, and then you will truly succeed.

 

Monday Motivation: You’re Not Here to Make a Living.

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“You are not here merely to make a living. You are here in order to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world, and you impoverish yourself if you forget the errand.” – Woodrow Wilson

 

You’re not here to make a living. You’re here to make a life.

 

Some days, or even weeks, I feel like all I do is work and then rest and regroup for work again. It can seem like a never-ending cycle. Am I just living to work? It’s easy for us to get in a routine of counting down the days of the week until the weekend (or until we’re off from work), but we should be appreciating every moment of our life. Whether we realize it or not, we make an impact at our workplace whenever we interact with coworkers, customers, or clients. What kind of impact are we leaving? Personally, I wouldn’t want to be remembered as the complainer or the person with a grimace on my face every day.

I want to attempt to live my life to the fullest wherever I am and whatever I’m doing. Instead of spending my days off checking social media or watching shows, I should be reading or writing to help me become a better writer. I shouldn’t be dreading or worrying about what will happen the next day. To truly live means to be fully present right where you are. It also means to be who you were created to be in order to have a positive influence on others. Life is more than just getting through the work day. To live means to inspire, to encourage, and to make the world better than it was before.

Monday Motivation: Just Get Started

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“The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” -Mark Twain

 

I hate getting out of bed most mornings. I hate cleaning. I even hate the thought of writing on some rare occasions. Once I actually start a task, it’s not as bad as I thought it would be. As a serial perfectionist and an avid procrastinator, sometimes it’s hard for me to get started on any work that I have to do for the day. I avoid whatever I have to do, because I think I won’t do a job well enough. Or I might get overwhelmed by all the projects I need to finish that I end up surrendering before I start. Instead of the focusing on the grain of sand, I see an entire mound; maybe even a steep mountain that I feel I must scale before my day is done.

As Mark Twain stated, it truly is easier to get a head start on work by simply beginning. As you start to conquer this week, whether you’re heading off to work or school, don’t let your duties and responsibilities overwhelm you. Take one day at a time or even one moment at a time, putting one step in front of the other as you follow your dreams and aspirations. If you’re writing a book, take on one chapter or one page at a time. If you’re trying to get promoted at work, do what you can for today, but don’t worry about tomorrow. If you’re trying to ace a final, study hard and do your best, but do not linger over one wrong answer. God has provided you with the energy, talent, and resources that you need for today. Make use of these, but do not labor ahead into the future. Simply begin today’s work, and you’ll be one step ahead of those who don’t take that first step.